Deposit system eyed to curb corruption
( 2003-11-29 10:51) (Xinhua)
China's local governments of Beijing, and Hunan, Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Guangdong provinces are attempting to set up a system of deposit to curb corruption of civil servants.
A procurator named He Longjiang of the People's Procuratorate of Liuyang has had some 1,000 yuan deducted from his salary and been given administrative punishment because he lent his mobile phone to a criminal suspect.
Liuyang City in central China's Hunan Province was the first place to set up the deposit system to supervise civil servants. More than 700 civil servants in the local governmental departmentsare now covered by it.
China has over 5 million civil servants. The recruitment, training and evaluation of civil servants have improved a lot since the country set up the civil service system in 1993.
As the number of civil servants grows, the Chinese government is attaching more importance to the education and supervision of civil servants to avoid corruption.
In the past, education in the law and ethics were the chief means used to combat corruption. The deposit system is the first attempt to hit wrongdoers in their pockets.
According to Chen Tao, head of the personnel bureau of Liuyang,the deposit is set up at banks, and is composed of two parts -- from individuals and from the government.
Each month 5 percent is deducted from each civil servant's salary, and the equivalent of 10 percent is taken from the department where the person serves. The money is out into the special bank account. The civil servants receive all the money in their accounts when they retire, Chen said.
But they will lose at least 20 percent or even all the savings if they violate the relevant regulations or break the law during their service with the government.
The Tax Bureau of Beijing's Mentougou District has set up a similar deposit system. The civil servants can get the money back at the end of each year if they don't make mistakes, said the headof bureau, surnamed Gao.
"The deposit keeps people from being corrupted by raising the cost of corruption," said Li Ganwen, an official at the Liuyang Commission for Discipline Inspection of the Communist Party of China (CPC).
However, some sociologists said the deposit could have a limited restriction on the behavior of civil servants, because it is not a large sum of money for them.
"The deposit will also create a financial burden, since part ofit comes from the government," said scholar of administration Wu Zhixiong. "And it widens the income gap between civil servants andother social groups."
This is an effort to curb corruption among civil servants, and should be put into practice to see the result, said Li Chunde, an official with the CPC's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.
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